Last March I had some problems with one of my eyes and young Doc Cecconi had to refer me on to another eye doctor down in E-town.
I really liked the guy and he did a great job on fixing my right eye but that is not what I’ll remember him for.
You see, he came from India originally and be began to explain that problems similar to mine result as we “grow wiser.”
I was puzzled at first.
Then I came to realize that in India it was a polite way of saying “as you grow older.”
But you know what?
Some people really do grow wiser as they grow older and I cherish their thoughts and words.
My favorite column of all time, though, came from questions posed by local elementary school youngsters aged seven to 13 to local oldsters in their 90s a few years back.
I spent about five hours relaying questions from these two totally different generations.
The oldsters were Mr. Hugh L. Grundy, Mrs. Mary Ann Hardin, and Mrs. Sadie Kate Leachman.
They are all gone now, but I found the thoughts they gave to living and family so very wise that I wanted to recount them this holiday season.
One was that most of our troubles today have come from wanting too much.
It seemed to me that they were repeating over and over again that material things are not necessary for happiness.
None seemed to really remember toys or possessions they had growing up.
In fact, they didn’t have much of anything, yet were happy.
Instead, they most remembered the simple times spent with their families and friends.
Isn’t that so true? What if we all simplified our lives so we could do more of that? What would be the result?
Here’s what I predict would happen when the kids that asked the original questions, or your kids, reached their 90s based on the answers that were given me.
Eighty years from now your kid won’t remember what expensive toys you gave them for Christmas, but they will remember that you used to always bake cookies on a cold night and play board games together.
Eighty years from now they won’t remember all the restaurants you took them out to, but they will remember the times you spent together eating a home-cooked meal and talking about what happened to them at school that day.
Eighty years from now they won’t remember the type of car you drove, but they will remember when you used to take them out riding on their bikes on lazy Sunday afternoons with nowhere to go and nothing to do.
Eighty years from now they won’t remember every childhood tragedy they had to face, but they will remember how they could always come to you and talk about it.
You were there to listen, and if not fix the situation, help you to learn to deal with it.
Eighty years from now they won’t remember everything they didn’t have, but everything that they did.
Eighty years from now they won’t remember how big and beautiful their house was, but how much it was filled with love.
Maybe then your kids could be like these people that were asked questions of.
Maybe they will say how the most important thing in life you gave to them was an ability to be happy with what they had and not with what they wanted.
Maybe they will say how much they treasured their youth and how they wouldn’t trade it for anything.
Maybe they will tell someone the most important thing you gave them was a belief in God Almighty and not the almighty dollar.
I’ve got a great story next week.
See you then.